We were able to stay hot this year and continue another mini streak last night with the under in the Cincinnati/Milwaukee matchup. Going right back to the well on Friday in game two of the series when Tom Gorzelanny opposes Mike Leake and the streaking Reds. The Brewers open up as home pups once again with a total of 8.0.
As a rookie that came straight out of the college game, Mike Leake showed flashes that warranted him being a top-10 draft pick and gave reason for people to believe he would eventually become the stud he has blossomed into this season. Leake has been sensational for Cincy, posting a 10-5 record with a 2.65 ERA and a 1.21 WHIP. The 25-year-old has been nothing short of a road warrior this season, which is one of the main reasons to back him in this spot. Leake is 7-1 with a 1.94 ERA away from Great American Ballpark. The improved road split shouldn’t come as a surprise as Leake is a fly ball pitcher whose home is one of the most hitter-friendly parks in all of baseball. Leake has also had success against Milwaukee earlier in the year where he had one of his finest outings of the season going 8.1 innings and surrendering just two runs on four hits. As a team, the Brewers have just a .223 career average against Leake, which includes numbers from when he was still developing as a prospect. With Carlos Gomez almost certainly out with a sprained knee after crashing into the wall on Thursday evening, all signs point to Leake having a nice start and handing the ball over to a dynamic Cincinnati bullpen.
On the flip side, I liken Tom Gorzelanny to Bruce Chen – whom I wrote about earlier this week. Gorzelanny has had his struggles at the Big League level but at age 31 he has found a home in Milwaukee. Gorzelanny carries a miniscule 1.07 WHIP into Friday’s start against Cincinnati. He also has great career numbers against the Reds’ lineup and gets to pitch at the confines of his home ballpark. The Reds rank middle of the pack against left-handers so there isn’t much concern about Gorzelanny going up against a lineup that smokes lefties. Not much I particularly love about Gorzelanny in this spot but there isn’t much concern either. I don’t see many reasons to believe that he shouldn’t continue pitching confidently and dominating opponents. Cincy has struggled swinging the bats lately as Brandon Phillips appears to be entering the twilight of his wonderful career.
There is a lot to like about Leake and I still believe Gorzelanny is undervalued in the current market very much due to his name and track record alone. Getting a key number of 8.0 is big. I see a large chance the total pushes but the probability of totaling seven runs or less seems greater than nine plus runs coming across. Going back to the under.
Free Pick: Cincinnati/Milwaukee Under 8.0